Friday, April 28, 2006

Glaxo denies pushing 'lifestyle' treatments

Glaxo denies pushing 'lifestyle' treatments

· 'Restless leg syndrome can ruin people's lives'
· British drug firms' figures outstrip expectations

Fiona Walsh
Friday April 28, 2006


GlaxoSmithKline, Europe's biggest drugs manufacturer, yesterday defended itself against accusations that it is turning healthy people into patients by "disease mongering" and pushing "lifestyle" treatments for little-known ailments.

Studies published in a respected medical journal, the Public Library of Science Medicine, this month accused the big pharmaceutical companies of "medicalising" problems such as high cholesterol and sexual dysfunction. The authors of the report highlighted the "restless legs" syndrome, described by GSK as "common yet unrecognised" when it launched its Ropinirole treatment last year.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

NHELD Research director's views on public schools

Excerpt of an interview with Judy Aron Research Director for the National Home Education Legal Defense

Are public schools fixable?

Yes. Here is what I think has to be done: Get rid of union control. Get rid of government mandates. Get the psychologists and psychiatric community out of the school system. Get rid of tenure. Put a cap on the amount spent on attorney fees for the schools. Do not allow unlimited legal proceedings against families who are just trying to do the right thing for their kids.

Drip Drip Drip - Paxil Info Leaks Out

Drip Drip Drip - Paxil Info Leaks Out

April 25, 2006. By Evelyn Pringle

Secrecy agreements in litigation hide information about defective
products or a company's negligence, and sometimes go so far as to
prohibit the parties from discussing that there ever was a lawsuit. Such
is the case with Paxil and as a result, unwitting patients continued to
take the drug long after its dangers were known to GlaxoSmithKline.

Many lawsuits filed against Glaxo have been settled out of court, with
confidential agreements that prevent the public from knowing about the
harmful effects of the Paxil.

Previously sealed documents and internal company memos suppressed with
protective orders, prove that Glaxo knew about the problems with Paxil
before it received FDA approval, but continued to sell the drug for over
a decade without warning consumers.


Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton on laudanum - an opium drug used for depression

On the life of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton:
Elizabeth experienced a period of darkness around the time when her stepmother and father separated. Reflecting about this period of depression in later years in her journal entitled Dear Remembrances, she expressed her relief at not taking the drug laudanum, a opium derivative: "This wretched reasoning-laudanum-the praise and thanks of excessive joy not to have done the ‘horrid deed’- thoughts and promise of eternal gratitude."
To bad people don't see modern antidepressants for being just the same thing. 

Pressure on to rekindle drug bill

Tuesday, April 25, 2006 - 12:00 AM

Pressure on to rekindle drug bill

By Alicia Mundy
Seattle Times Washington bureau

WASHINGTON — A year ago, a bill giving the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the authority to make pharmaceutical companies conduct safety studies of drugs after they're approved disappeared into the Senate committee that handles health matters.

But the results of a new report by congressional investigators on continuing safety problems at the FDA may put pressure on members of that committee to revive the bill.

Among those senators is Patty Murray, who has not been vocal on general drug-safety issues. The Washington Democrat has served on the Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions panel since 1996.

The bill's author, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, applauded the study by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) on Monday, saying it vindicated testimony at a Senate hearing he held in late 2004 on the FDA's safety procedures.

Grassley called the FDA "an agency in denial" and said it's time to act on his bill.


Wednesday, April 19, 2006

TeenScreen - Stealing Our Children's Future

TeenScreen - Stealing Our Children's Future
April 19, 2006
by Jeanyne Wanner
 Our next generation of children is in grave danger. TeenScreen is working insidiously in schools to find children who can become the psychiatric/pharmaceutical industry's next cash cow. Echoing Hillary Clinton's infamous theme "It takes a village...", TeenScreen is being pushed secretly into schools. This may be good for the drug business but is very bad for our children and, factually, for the future of this entire society.

How do you disable an entire generation? Truth be told, it's actually very simple. You just have to get to the children while they are young, before they are able to speak for themselves. You convince the parents of these children that their children are victims, victims of something not under their control, something sinister yet not scientifically measurable.

You create "disorders" and catalogue them in authoritative tomes that no one would dare question. You heavily promote these vague "disorders" or "mental illnesses," whose symptoms are general enough to encompass almost anyone at any time. You then offer dangerous drugs as the solution to these "mental disorders". You downplay the host of terrible side effects attendant to these drugs, up to and including death, according to the latest FDA warnings. You hide the fact that the drugs will destroy the children's spontaneity, decisiveness, and their right to experience life unfettered by chemical constraints.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Preschoolers put on 'adult' medication

This is so sick!


Preschoolers put on ‘adult’ medication
Study: 246 kids in Oregon Health Plan use drugs not tested for childen

    A new study directed by an Oregon Health & Science University professor has found that 246 preschool children covered by the state-sponsored Oregon Health Plan are receiving antipsychotic or antidepressant medications that have never been studied for use in children.
   And while the study’s lead researcher admits the figure might seem alarming, mental health experts caution that the prescriptions might have been justified and may be a result of Oregon’s insufficient mental health resources.
   The study, a collaboration between the state’s department of human services, its Medicaid program and the Oregon State University College of Pharmacy, was headed by OHSU psychiatry professor David Pollack. Pollack said he understands that at first glance, the prospect of children age 5 and under receiving psychiatric medication intended for adults can be startling.
   “There’s an element of alarm,” he said. “But it leads us to say we need to answer more questions. It doesn’t mean it’s inappropriate.”
   Pollack noted that the 246 children represent less than one-half of 1 percent of the 86,828 Oregon Health Plan children whose records were reviewed. The Oregon Health Plan is an insurance program for low-income Oregonians funded through Medicaid.
   “The problem is there’s very little data to direct the use of pharmacological agents in preschool children,” said Joan Luby, associate professor of child psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. “There’s just not much known. That doesn’t mean these drugs aren’t effective. We just don’t have the studies to show whether they are safe and effective.”

a report on company PR slipped into news

The Fight Against Disease Mongering: Generating Knowledge for Action

From Kristie at wildestcolts newsgroup:


I found a series of articles to help those of us who are bamboozled by "research" and the "experts" who
conduct the studies. Knowledge is Power!


The Fight against Disease Mongering: Generating
Knowledge for Action
by Ray Moynihan, David Henry*

Why Most Published Research Findings Are False
by John P. A. Ioannidis

Serotonin and Depression: A Disconnect between the
Advertisements and the Scientific Literature

Pharmaceutical Marketing and the Invention of the
Medical Consumer
by Kalman Applbaum

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Drug studies skewed toward study sponsors

Drug studies skewed toward study sponsors
Industry-funded research often favors patent-holders, study finds

By Shankar Vedantam
Updated: 10:35 p.m. ET April 11, 2006

Pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly and Co. recently funded five studies that compared its antipsychotic drug Zyprexa with Risperdal, a competing drug made by Janssen. All five showed Zyprexa was superior in treating schizophrenia.

But when Janssen sponsored its own studies comparing the two drugs, Risperdal came out ahead in two out of three.

In fact, when psychiatrist John Davis analyzed every publicly available trial funded by the pharmaceutical industry pitting six new antipsychotic drugs against one another, nine in 10 showed that the best drug was the one made by the company funding the study.

Mary Jacobs: To be a Man

"Think of two fictional icons of American boyhood, Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer. The Widow Douglas may have attempted to civilize them with starched collars and good table manners, but Mr. Gurian says, 'If Huck and Tom were alive today, they'd probably be diagnosed with a conduct disorder and put on Ritalin.'"